Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - 38

THE TRUTH BY AMY SAUNDERS

Many women
find the months
after childbirth
challenging.

TRUE OR FALSE:

The uterus usually shrinks
to its pre-pregnancy size
within six weeks.

THE TRUTH ABOUT

THE POSTPARTUM PERIOD
For new moms, physical, hormonal and emotional changes
don't stop when the baby is born

38

SP RIN G 2 0 1 8

PHOTO BY GETTY IMAGES

Through 40 weeks of baby-bump photos, many pregnant women
record how their bodies change as they prepare to give birth.
The changes that come next aren't as well-documented. Friends
who swap pregnancy stories may not discuss uncomfortable topics like postpartum
depression and vaginal health. And celebrity magazines show perfect post-baby
bodies, not women struggling to lose one pound at a time.
Here's the truth about "the fourth trimester."

TRUE. Your baby belly will start
to disappear as your stretched-out
uterus retracts. Plus, in the week
after the birth, you'll probably lose
10 to 15 pounds between the baby
and excess water, blood and amniotic fluid.
That doesn't mean you should
expect to see your pre-pregnancy
body after only six weeks. Many
women experience diastasis recti, a
condition in which the left and right
sides of the rectus abdominal muscles separate, resulting in a "pooch"
that's more difficult to lose. Before
starting a situp marathon, talk with
your doctor about when it's safe to
start ab exercises.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia

Contents
Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - Cover1
Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - Cover2
Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - Contents
Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - 2
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Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - Cover3
Vim & Vigor - Spring 2018 - University of Virginia - Cover4
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